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Why do we call it a cpd year when, in all honesty, almost everybody scrambles to complete in the last weeks before their enrolment expires?
This year, the theme in financial circles has been trust and confidence, including demonstrating ethical and professional conduct. Additionally, the looming final year of current adviser education standards has coincided with general discussion about the future of work in an Industry 4.0 world.
What is the industry to make of all that? On the whole, most cpd is bitsy, offers overwhelming choice, and is retrospective. Furthermore, a cpd provider’s role is not to regurgitate news and pass that off as education – proficient financial services professionals should be reading mainstream press and trade publications consistently anyway.
The industry is drowning in information and starving for wisdom.
As Forrester has suggested, without an appropriate system of insight, organisation and analysis, that information is just data, when it could actually be generating vision that leads to such actionable outcomes as:
- Demonstrating aspirational leadership
- Facilitating innovation; and
- Promoting ethical workplace culture.
These are not standalone practice areas – they should be integrated into all learning and activity.
And as NSW Department of Education secretary, Mark Scott, recently told ABC’s Lateline: “Unless we're teaching [students] how to learn, unless we're teaching them how to master the new, we'll be letting them down.”
Amid all the recent talk about micro-credentialing, RTOs have a long history of being relevant and flexible, and of delivering learning in a modularised way. And ASIC’s specialist knowledge requirements mean that industry associations should not have a monopoly on accrediting adviser training – the regulator already offers a perfectly workable framework that is amenable to being contextualised for each business’ operating environment.
At Financial Education Professionals we believe cpd should deliver the right blend of technical, communication and strategic thinking skills at regular intervals throughout the year, supported by discussion and debate in workplace forums such as team meetings.
That’s when learning becomes less a tolerated requirement and more of an engaging, interesting and willingly participated-in experience that enriches us all.